Esports – The New Cash Career For Kids

If you’re over 50 and reading this, you better sit down. No, not on the couch. Sit over there in the corner on an uncomfortable chair and be prepared to be confused.
You know how your parents told you to work hard and to keep your nose clean and everything would work out alright, career-wise? Yeah, good advice begat sound results. Not really knowing what we wanted to do except the right thing by our parents – Baby Boomers made out like bandits in the sweepstakes vocational success. We got good jobs, we really worked hard and now we’re sitting pretty.
Flash forward to today and parental advice might sound something like this …
“So Jimmy, what do you want to be when you grow up?”
“Oh, I dunno Dad. I’m thinking fireman or pet vet or even one of those entertainment agents. Have you ever seen that TMZ video of Stormy Daniels motor boating? Man, who wouldn’t want a piece of that action?”
“Look Jimmy, try and focus here …. You said TMZ? That’s it? You just type in TMZ and … sorry, okay. Have you ever thought about becoming a lawyer?”
“You mean like Rudy Giuliani or Michael Cohen?”
“Okay, forget I said that. A journalist?”
“You mean like Mike Duffy?
“You’re killing me, kid. Now your mother and I both know you’ve got great hand-eye co-ordination and love to be outdoors all day playing hockey or soccer …”
“So yeah, professional sports. That’ll be cool.”
“No, not sports Jimmy. Esports.”
“What’s that?”
“It’s when you sit on the couch all day and go like this, really fast, with your thumbs.”
“But you and Mom wouldn’t let me ‘game’. You said playing ‘Assassin’s Creed’ and ‘New Vegas’ would warp my brain and I wouldn’t be able to see the difference between killing bad guys on the screen and killing people in real life.”
“Well, you’re Mom and I, we were wrong about that. You see last month the International Data 2 Championship attracted 40,000 fans to watch gamers game at Rogers Arena in Vancouver.”
“That’s a lot of people.”
“That’s more fans than the B.C. Lions draw at the Rogers arena. And ten million fans streamed it online. Plus, there was $25 million dollars in prize money.”
“That’s a lot of money!”
“The total salary for 46 players on the Lion’s team is $5.2 million. And those guys have to sweat for it.”
“So people actually pay to watch kids like me play video games?”
“15,000 people bought tickets for the finals, the day they went on sale!”
“That’s gross!”
“Net actually, but you’re getting the idea.”
“So, you want me to sit on the couch for eight hours a day playing video games which you used to refer to as ‘brain drainers’?
“Now we call it ‘practice time’. Carlos ‘The Ocelot’ Rodrigues sometimes spends up to twelve hours a day doing this … with the thumbs.”
“Who’s he?”
“Who’s he! Carlos only happens to be one of the very best esport gamers in the world making $820,000 a year! That’s who.”
“But I thought you wanted me to play regular sports.”
“Oh gawd, with all that sweat and dirty jock straps flying around the room, Athlete’s foot and toe jam. No, Jimmy, we want you to sit on the leather couch in an air-conditioned room and kill things like this … with your thumbs.”
“But you said Wayne Gretzky was your hero growing up.”
“Gretzky earned $250,000 for his first season with the Indianapolis Racers. Jonathan “Fatality” Wendel only plays a few etournaments a year and his take is $455,000. Jimmy, someday Gretzky will be financially ghosted and “Fabulous Fatality” will own Amazon.”
“Ya think?”
“Jimmy, it’s all about long-term asset achievability.”
“What’s that?”
“Basically… my retirement.”
“Ah, I dunno Dad. Esports?”
“Soon gaming will be an Olympic sport.”
“You gotta be kidding.”
“No. There’s too many fans and too much money for a corrupt organization like the International Olympic Committee not to make it part of the games.”
“So professional athletes and gamers are now like the same?”
“Of course they are. The only difference is that gamers don’t have to exert any physical energy. Saves a lot of wear and tear on the body.”
“So no injuries, eh?”
“No, not unless you consider bed sores on your butt a career-ending injury.”
“So now, on a sunny day like today, I can go down to the basement and play video games until I fall asleep?”
“Not the basement. Your mother and I have taken all the furniture out of the living room except the couch. We’ve installed six big screens, a snack bar and a Red Bull cooler. Knock yourself out!
“And what are you gonna do?”
“I thought I’d go down to the basement and read.”
“See ya.”
“Okay … and that motorboat thing? It was on MTV?”
“TMZ. No boat. No motor.”

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